Captain America 4 set photos tease the returns of two MCU characters

Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) in Marvel Studios’ THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) in Marvel Studios’ THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER. Photo by Chuck Zlotnick. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved. /

Set photos of Harrison Ford’s Thaddeus Ross and Tim Blake Nelson’s The Leader has surfaced from Captain America 4, providing fans with their first look at the two returning characters. 

As revealed via Twitter from Den of Geek, set photos have surfaced of Harrison Ford as Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross and Tim Blake Nelson as Samuel Sterns who is set to be an enemy for Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) who ditched his dark Falcon winged-grab for the red, white, and blue Captain America uniform in Captain America: New World Order.

The first shot taken and shared by one of the film’s update fan sites showed Ford as Ross in a downward shot in a conventional, smartly-dressed, blue shirt and dark pants in a matching tie. This is somewhat reminiscent of Ford’s look in the Wolfgang Petersen-helmed political thriller, Air Force One, perhaps fuelling those President Ross rumors.

The next shot is where things get a bit more interesting. It shows Nelson as Sterns, who maintains a mostly ordinary appearance and not the extra large cranium like the comics. However, his forearms and hands carry a green hue compared to the rest of his body. He also is sporting a green striped shirt and purple slacks which is a call-back to Dr. Banner’s dress code in Hulk comics.

From these photos, it’s hard to pinpoint the proper context of how the actors will be portrayed on screen in their respective characters. Between the time Sterns was infected by Dr. Banner’s Hulk blood and when Captain America 4 takes place, it has been over 15 years. It can be presumed that Sterns’ gamma-mutation is progressing slower due to the amount of dosage received.

How does The Leader play into all this with Thunderbolt Ross?

Constant rumors are flying around that Ross will become Red Hulk in the film and will set up Thunderbolts including a storyline that will pay off that was initially kick-started by She-Hulk: Attorney at Law possibly involving the Hulk family and other related storylines. Perhaps The Leader is who is behind Ross’ eventual transformation and is what forces him out of office.

Captain America: New World Order stars Anthony Mackie, Danny Ramirez, Carl Lumbly, Tim Blake Nelson, Shira Haas, Harrison Ford, and Liv Tyler.

Julius Onah is directing from a screenplay by Malcolm Spellman and Dalan Musson. Kevin Feige and Nate Moore are producing for Marvel Studios under Walt Disney Studios.

Mackie’s high-flying Capt. is set to don the jet-pack All-American stripes on the big screen in theaters on May 3, 2024.

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What do you think of the set photos captured on the set of Captain America: New World Order? Sound off in the comments!